I can’t guarantee any college theatre program will be perfect.
But what I can say is that doing your research will only help you in the long run.
I’m breaking down everything you need to know to find your perfect college theatre program right here! Plus, I have a handy YouTube video on it if you’d prefer to watch and learn:
The 2 Types of Colleges: City vs. Campus
Let’s start with the basics: You’ve got two main types of colleges: city colleges and campus colleges.
City colleges have you studying right in the heart of a bustling city, and perfect for those ready to embrace the dynamic rhythm of urban living alongside their academic pursuits.
Campus colleges have everything you need, nestled within the college grounds. Libraries, dining halls, and dorms all within a cozy, community-like environment.
BFA (Bachelor of Fine Arts) vs. BA (Bachelor of Arts) Programs
You’ve got two main players in theatre programs: the Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) and the Bachelor of Arts (BA).
Think of BFAs as a deep dive into your craft with a spotlight on a specific specialty. They often (not always, but often!) have a more rigorous audition process and require more intensive focus on your major. Think Ithaca College and Emerson College– if you’ve been researching these programs, these might have come up quite a bit!
Think of BAs as a broader liberal arts education. It’s great for those who want to explore lots of different interests alongside theatre– perhaps double major, minor, or get involved in some other extracurriculars and really diversify your education.
Important Questions to Ask
💬 How many performance opportunities are there within the school?
💬 Are there any additional auditions after getting accepted into the college? (This totally happened to me! And spoiler: I didn’t get in. And I survived.)
💬 How hard is it to get involved in theatrical aspects outside of your major? (Maybe you’re a performance major but want to get involved in tech, directing or even the music department.)
Things to Remember (Here’s What I’d Whisper In Your Ear During All Your Auditions…)
College doesn’t define you. That includes your major, your ability to get cast, how well you’re doing in your classes, everything. This is all a learning experience, where you get to be in the driver’s seat of your education and what you make of it.
Diversify what you’re learning. If you’ve never taken a stage lighting class, do it! See what it’s like to be on the other side of the stage. You’ll get a perspective and appreciation you’ve never gotten before.
Don’t get caught up in the degree name. I’ve never been to an audition where they asked me for my degree before considering me.
For more in-depth information, be sure to watch the whole YouTube video to learn about my experience through college! And if you’re interested in optimizing your creative life even more, take a gaze at some of these next:
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